The Europa League Round of 32 ended on Thursday and there were a couple of surprising results. Manchester United booked their place in the last 16 with fellow Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur crashing out after failing to produce a result against Gent. Meanwhile, AS Roma demonstrated their lethal ability by firing in 4 goals at Villarreal who have the best defence in the league.
We take a look at five teams who have impressed the most in the Europa League:
Dzeko has averaged a goal every 43 minutes for Roma in the Europa League so far this season!
— Footy Accumulators (@FootyAccums) February 23, 2017
The Serie A club were handed a tricky draw with Villarreal in the last 32 of the competition. The first leg was played at El Madrigal and Roma came back with one foot in the Round of 16 with a 4-0 win. Their attack was just too much for the men in yellow as Edin Dzeko grabbed a hat-trick. Though Villarreal were able to hit back with a 1-0 win at Roma in the return leg, but the 4 goal deficit was a lot to overturn as Roma progressed 4-1 on aggregate.
— Gladbach (@borussia_en) February 23, 2017
Borussia were left stranded at their own stadium as Fiorentina went away with an away goal as well a crucial 1-0 win over the German Club. A response was needed from Dieter Hecking's boys in the return leg in Italy and they responded magnificently as they came back from 2 goals behind to score 4 goals in 15 minutes to win the match 4-2 and 4-3 on aggregate. Stindl registered a hat-trick in a span of 11 minutes.
The Cypriot first division league leaders went to Spain in their first leg of the last 32 tie with Athletic Club. And they raised a few eyes as in spite of a 3-2 defeat, they came home with 2 vital away goals. It was difficult to produce a result against the 2011/12 runners-up of this competition, but APOEL gave their fans something to jeer about by knocking Athletic Club 2-0 and going through to the last 16, 4-3 on aggregate.
— Kristof Terreur ðŸ“° (@HLNinEngeland) February 24, 2017
Despite being drawn with a tough fixture with Tottenham Hotspur, Gent delivered a statement of purpose with their 1-0 win in the first leg in Belgium against Spurs. They stopped Spurs from getting an away goal but Spurs were still firm favourites to go through. But in a shock result at the Wembley Stadium, Spurs saw their talisman Dele Alli get sent off and Perbet’s 82nd-minute equaliser for Gent made sure that the Belgian club qualified to the last 16 by knocking out the Premier League heavyweights, 3-2 on aggregate.
Olympic Lyonnais is also another tough contender left in the competition after winning handsomely on aggregate. Lyon dispatched AZ 4-1 win at AFAS Stadion. And then in the return leg in France, they battered the Dutch side by 7-1. Out of the Ligue 1 title race and domestic cup competitions, Lyon had only Europa League left to play for after getting demoted from the UEFA Champions League. And they showcased their willingness to get something notable out of this competition with their thumping victories at home and away against Dutch side AZ Alkmaar.
— UEFA Europa League (@EuropaLeague) February 23, 2017